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2017 Info Source

Info Source

 

 

 

 

 

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Table of Contents

General Information

Institutional Functions, Programs and Activities

Manuals

Additional Information

Reading Room

 

General Information

 

Information to Info Source

Info Source: Sources of Federal Government and Employee Information provides information about the functions, programs, activities and related information holdings of government institutions subject to the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act.It provides individuals and employees of the government (current and former) with relevant information to access personal information about themselves held by government institutions subject to the Privacy Act and to exercise their rights under the Privacy Act.

The Introduction and an Index of institutions subject to the Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act are available centrally.

The Access to Information Act and the Privacy Act assign overall responsibility to the President of Treasury Board (as the designated Minister) for the government-wide administration of the legislation.

 

Background

VIA Rail Canada operates the national passenger rail service on behalf of the Government of Canada. The Corporation’s objectives are to provide and manage a safe, efficient, and reliable passenger rail service in Canada. VIA Rail Canada’s plans and funding are approved by the Treasury Board of Canada through VIA Rail Canada’s annual Corporate Plan.

VIA Rail Canada was established in 1977 as a subsidiary of Canadian National Railway Company (CN).  VIA Rail Canada became a Crown Corporation in 1978, and was incorporated under the Canada Business Corporations Act. VIA Rail Canada does not have its own enabling legislation. VIA Rail Canada is a Schedule III, Part I Crown Corporation, is appropriation-dependent, and is not an Agent of Her Majesty.

An independent Board of Directors governs VIA Rail Canada. Board members are appointed by the Governor-in-Council following recommendation by the Minister of Transport.  VIA Rail Canada’s Board of Directors is responsible for overseeing the strategic direction and management of the Corporation. The Corporation and its Board of Directors are committed to implementing principles and best practices of good governance.  All members of the Board sign a code of ethics reflecting the spirit and intent of the Accountability Act, which sets out standards of transparency and accountability for the officers and directors of Crown corporations. VIA Rail’s Board of Directors reports to the Minister of Transport, The Honourable Marc Garneau. The Minister tables VIA Rail Canada’s Annual Report to Parliament, the Summary of VIA’s Corporate Plan, and reports on VIA Rail Canada’s operations to the House of Commons.

 

Responsibilities

VIA Rail Canada operates close to 475 train departures weekly on a 12,500 kilometers rail network, connecting over 400 Canadian communities across the country. VIA Rail Canada's fleet includes 444 train cars and 73 active locomotives. In addition to 121 train stations, VIA Rail Canada operates four modern maintenance facilities. VIA Rail Canada owns 2% of the rail network on which it operates. A total of 98% of the infrastructure used by the passenger rail service is owned and managed by railway partners, primarily CN and Canadian Pacific Railway Company (CP). With approximately 2600 active employees, VIA Rail Canada carried 3.8 million passengers in 2015.

In 2012, VIA Rail Canada built the foundation of its future evolution. Frequency adjustments were implemented at the end of October, along with an intermodal strategy.  The new frequencies between Ottawa and Toronto, Montréal and Toronto, Montréal and Québec City, and between Québec City and Ottawa, as well as the multiplicity of intermodal connections with our transportation partners are all part of this strategy. 

Through our Statement on Official Languages, VIA Rail Canada recognizes English and French as the two official languages. The Corporation is committed to taking positive measures to serve members of the public and its clients in the official language of their choice.

Our Safety Policy develops and communicates the corporate commitment to health and safety.  The policy includes VIA Rail Canada’s safety beliefs, values and overall direction.

VIA Rail Canada has an Environmental Policy, which provides the guidelines for the implementation and improvement of its Environmental Management System (EMS).

Furthermore, VIA Rail Canada recognizes the value of its information assets as being an essential part of its daily operations. In order to achieve its goals, VIA Rail Canada applies security measures according to the level of importance the information asset has within the company in compliance with governing legislation, regulations, collective agreements, directives and standards. VIA Rail Canada applies this through our Information Security Policy.

And finally, the purpose of VIA Rail Canada’s Privacy Policy is to govern the collection, use and disclosure of personal information in compliance with the requirements set out in the Federal Government’s Privacy Act.

Our Vision

To make of passenger rail the preferred way to move and connect people in Canada.

Our Mission (to our customers)

To offer a safe, attractive and stress-free travel experience, while consistently providing the best value for money.

Our Mandate (from our Shareholder)

To offer a national passenger rail transportation service that is safe, secure, efficient, reliable, and environmentally sustainable, and that meets the needs of travelers in Canada.

 

Institutional Functions, Programs and Activities

Institution-Specific Content

Operation of National Passage Rail Transportation System

VIA Rail Canada’s main program activity consists of the operation of a national passenger rail transportation system.  In order to achieve this objective, VIA Rail Canada performs the functions described below.

Customer Experience

Customer Experience function is responsible for activities directly contributing to the customer experience including the delivery of services in stations and on-board trains. The function is also responsible for the administration of real estate and property management.

 

Federal Government Train Travel Privileges

Description: Includes records related to the requests for train travel privileges for the active Governor General, Prime Minister, Senators, Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Members of Parliament, their dependant spouse, dependent children, dependant student or other eligible dependant living with them (if applicable), as well as the Chairman and members of VIA Rail Canada’s Board of Directors, their dependant spouse, dependent children, dependent children who are students. 

Document Types: VIA Rail Canada’s Rail Pass Policy and “Train Passes for Members of Parliament Declaration” forms, rail passes and correspondence.

Record Number:VIA 1620

Marketing Sales and Commercial Planning

The Marketing and Sales function oversees all marketing and sales components at VIA Rail Canada including product design to increase both passenger and non-passenger related revenues. It is also responsible for Customer Relations, Revenue Management and Pricing, as well as Business Development. In addition, this function has the mandate to conduct customer and market research in order to help VIA Rail Canada anticipate and respond to customers' needs. Part of its mandate is to provide services through the Telephone Sales Offices.
 

On-line ticket reservations and sales

Description:  Core reservation system which houses various reservation applications and contains records related to trips such as: point of origin, destination, passenger type, class of service, conditions of fare plans, business travel fares, fare paid, promotions, discounts and refund entitlements, lists of authorized use of rail passes, train operations, train schedules (timetable and scheduling), late trains, inventory by train (seat/cabin), reservation information, fare determination and pricing guidelines.

Document Types: Customer profiles, booking confirmations, Close the Sale (“CTS”), e-tickets, ticket cancellation confirmations, free upgrades to business class, promotional vouchers, familiarisation trip vouchers, lists, train schedules, correspondence and statistical reports.

Record Number:VIA 2360

 

Loyalty Marketing

Description: Includes records related to train travel (point of origin, destination, passenger type, class of service, fare paid, promotions and discount and refund entitlements), point transactions (multi-tier management), contact logs and marketing communications history (a record of communications with our client base).

Document Types: VIA Préférence Training manual, enrolment forms, correspondence, membership cards, member benefit coupons, press releases, newsletters, presentations, an electronic website for VIA Préférence members and VIA Rail Canada sales agents, statistical reporting and memoranda.

Record Number:VIA 6000

 

Marketing Support and Customer Relations

Description: Includes records related to correspondence from passengers commending front-line employees (onboard, station staff, call centre staff and administrative employees) for the quality of services received. Also included are records related to the processing of customer complaint issues and some types of information requests that cannot be handled by the front-line (onboard) employees, station staff, call centre staff and administrative employees.  Requests for information are not limited to the following and may include correspondence concerning fare and pricing related issues and timetable and scheduling issues.  Complaints may include service offering, onboard passenger experience, station and property issues and general administration.

Document Types: Tickets, ticket vouchers, promotional vouchers, travel certificates, guidelines, correspondence and statistical reports.

Record Number:VIA 5700

 

Operations

The Operations function touches on all aspects of VIA Rail Canada's business relating to maintenance, engineering, fleet and inventory management and train operations. It ensures all trains are operated efficiently, reliably and safely in accordance with VIA Rail Canada's service standards and applicable rules and regulations.

Infrastructure and Station Projects

Description: Includes records related to the development and implementation of railway infrastructure improvements while creating public awareness through public information sessions with municipalities and promoting the benefits of VIA Rail Canada’s projects for rail safety and improvements.  The records may also include information on track construction, rail signal systems, construction, bridge construction, rail crossings and the construction of fencing along the Right-Of-Way.

Document Types: Correspondance, station concept documentation and notices.

Record Number:VIA 8300

 

Internal Services

Internal Services are groups of related activities and resources that are administered to support the needs of programs and other corporate obligations of an organization. These groups are: Management and Oversight Services; Communications Services; Legal Services; Human Resources Management Services; Financial Management Services; Information Management Services; Information Technology Services; Real Property Services; Materiel Services; Acquisition Services; and Travel and Other Administrative Services. Internal Services include only those activities and resources that apply across an organization and not to those provided specifically to a program.

 

Acquisition

Acquisition services involve activities undertaken to acquire a good or service to fulfill a properly completed request (including a complete and accurate definition of requirements and certification that funds are available) until entering into or amending a contract.

 

Communications Services

Communications services involve activities undertaken to ensure that Government of Canada communications are effectively managed, well-coordinated and responsive to the diverse information needs of the public. The communications management function ensures that the public—internal or external—receives government information, and that the views and concerns of the public are taken into account in the planning, management and evaluation of policies, programs, services and initiatives.

 

Financial Management Services

Financial management services involve activities undertaken to ensure the prudent use of public resources, including planning, budgeting, accounting, reporting, control and oversight, analysis, decision support and advice, and financial systems.

 

Human Resources Management

Human resources management services involve activities undertaken for determining strategic direction, allocating resources among services and processes, as well as activities relating to analyzing exposure to risk and determining appropriate countermeasures. They ensure that the service operations and programs of the federal government comply with applicable laws, regulations, policies and plans.

 

Information Management Services

Information management services involve activities undertaken to achieve efficient and effective information management to support program and service delivery; foster informed decision making; facilitate accountability, transparency and collaboration; and preserve and ensure access to information and records for the benefit of present and future generations.

 

Information Technology Services

Information technology services involve activities undertaken to achieve efficient and effective use of information technology to support government priorities and program delivery, to increase productivity, and to enhance services to the public.

 

Legal Services

Legal services involve activities undertaken to enable government departments and agencies to pursue policy, program and service delivery priorities and objectives within a legally sound framework.

 

Management and Oversight Services

Management and oversight services involve activities undertaken for determining strategic direction and allocating resources among services and processes, as well as those activities related to analyzing exposure to risk and determining appropriate countermeasures. They ensure that the service operations and programs of the federal government comply with applicable laws, regulations, policies or plans.

 

Materiel Services

Materiel services involve activities undertaken to ensure that materiel can be managed by departments in a sustainable and financially responsible manner that supports the cost-effective and efficient delivery of government programs.

 

Real Property Services

Real property services involve activities undertaken to ensure that real property is managed in a sustainable and financially responsible manner, throughout its life cycle, to support the cost-effective and efficient delivery of government programs.

 

Travel and Other Administrative Services

Travel and other administrative services include Government of Canada travel services, as well as those other internal services that do not smoothly fit with any of the internal services categories.

 

Manuals

Corporate Guideline for Passenger Names
Guideline for Conditions of Carriage
Guide on Train Service
Procedure for Request for Information
Train Emergency Response Plan
Travelling Better Together - a Safe and Secure Travel Environment

 

Additional Information

The Government of Canada encourages the informal release of information.  In this regard, you may wish to consult VIA Rail Canada’s completed Access to Information summaries. To submit an informal request for information that has been previously released, please contact VIA Rail Canada’s Access to Information and Privacy (ATIP) Office. 

To make a formal request, mail your letter or Access to Information Request Form(Access to Information Act) or Personal Information Request Form (Privacy Act) to the following address:
VIA Rail Canada Inc.
Access to Information and Privacy Coordinator
3 Place Ville-Marie, Suite 500
Montréal (Québec) H3B 2C9

Please note: Each request made to VIA Rail Canada under the Access to Information Act, must be accompanied by an application fee of $5.00, cheque or money order made payable to VIA Rail Canada.

 

Reading Room

In accordance with the Access to Information Act and Privacy Act, an area on the premises will be made available should the applicant wish to review materials on site. The address is: 3 Place Ville-Marie, Room 500, Montreal, Quebec.